Catacombs - Cass McCombs
Catacombs Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: This is the foruth album for the singer from Baltimore.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. McCombs still has an ear for language and roll-off-the-tongue singing. His voice coats the lyrics like thick warm caramel on this one. Though often obtuse and twisted, McCombs includes some straightforward lyrics, as well, with some political commentary to boot.
  2. 88
    There's an underlying transcendence in McCombs' work that acts as pure poetry, but it also can come across as direct storytelling when taken at surface value. [Summer 2009, p.96]
  3. Despite the sparser arrangements and increased focus on direct lyricism, it's every bit as aurally hypnotic as his previous work. It seems like he realized there was someone he really did want to sing to.
  4. Impressively, though, he advocates excavation of the subconscious by invading the listener’s own, using songs more indelible than the mind says they have any right to be.
  5. What’s left, then, is an album that’s overlong, but one that’s surprisingly easy to succumb to.
  6. While Eavesdropping On The Competition and Jonesy Boy won’t necessarily being appearing on any coffee tables in the near future, they don’t feel up to the standard of the other nine songs. This is a small complaint because when Catacombs works, it really works, and it mostly really works.
  7. 60
    Regularly a memorable lyric leaps out--but too often the pared-down aesthetic is an excuse to coast. [Aug 2009, p.96]

See all 15 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Feb 23, 2011
    Love it! Everything about this album is magic and beautiful. I think it could have probably have a better production though. I like the way it sounds naked and very minimal but I think it could have used some great string arrangements but that's only a detail... The songs are lovely. "You Saved My Life" gives me goose bump. A truly masterpiece of pop music. Expand